Anti-Bullying Regulations in DC Promise Ubiquitous Micromanagement

Glenn Ricketts

The contagion of bureaucratically enforced niceness continues unabated: if you're fond of the encroaching campus sexual harassment codes we've been covering in this space, you're bound to love this proposed anti-bullying ordinance in Washington DC, dissected here today at The Atlantic by attorney and civil lbertarian Wendy Kaminer. As she notes, there may well be a threshold at which verbal abuse constitutes legitimately punishable harassment, but the bill currently under consideration by the DC Council goes way, WAY, beyond those limits: "Virtually no speech or behavior that a student might consider insulting and that a petty bureaucrat might find offensive and disruptive is beyond the reach of this ban." Thus, all public schools, parks, libraries, facilities, agencies and the public university within the federal district will be within reach of the anti-bullying dragnet to be cast if the ordinance is enacted. Not only that, the law would also establish a network of anonymous snitches and informers who would be obliged to report any suspected "bullying" activity to "the appropriate authorities." Although Kaminer concludes that the bill in its present form is surely unconstitutional, I can't shake the uncomfortable feeling that many higher education bureaucrats - especially the folks who work in the "campus climate" office - are glowing warmly with admiration.

  • Share

Most Commented

July 16, 2020

1.

An Emeritus Professor Under Siege Once Again

The case of Stuart Hurlbert is a grim reminder that not even emeritus professors are safe from the continual onslaught of heterodox views by higher ed censors....

June 15, 2020

2.

See Clearly, Decide Wisely, Act Justly

An Open Letter to the Converse College Community in response to its administrative decisions relating to diversity and inclusion on campus. ...

July 28, 2020

3.

Exclusive: UT Austin Proposes Political Litmus Tests for Hiring and Promotion

The University of Texas at Austin has proposed the “Faculty Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Strategic Plan," exchanging merit-based success for identity-based dive...

Most Read

May 15, 2015

1.

Where Did We Get the Idea That Only White People Can Be Racist?

A look at the double standard that has arisen regarding racism, illustrated recently by the reaction to a black professor's biased comments on Twitter....

July 28, 2020

2.

Exclusive: UT Austin Proposes Political Litmus Tests for Hiring and Promotion

The University of Texas at Austin has proposed the “Faculty Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Strategic Plan," exchanging merit-based success for identity-based dive...

July 16, 2020

3.

An Emeritus Professor Under Siege Once Again

The case of Stuart Hurlbert is a grim reminder that not even emeritus professors are safe from the continual onslaught of heterodox views by higher ed censors....